The Irish Times - Friday - The Ticket - - COVER STORY -

Niall Byrne, If you’re a new band look­ing to get heard, be a self-starter.

Don’t hire a PR company. Make a list of peo­ple in the me­dia who might be into the mu­sic based on what they cover. Get fa­mil­iar with their out­put be­fore con­tact­ing them.

Use your common sense. Don’t send your band’s EP of heavy rock to a dance mu­sic colum­nist. Don’t send printed photographs of your band to any­one, es­pe­cially ra­dio. Ev­ery­one is busy. Mu­sic writ­ers want clear and con­cise in­for­ma­tion. Send a per­son­ally writ­ten email to a sin­gle per­son (no CC’d mul­ti­ple re­cip­i­ents, tweets or per­sonal Face­book mes­sages). Ad­dress them by their first name with a short fact-driven bio, re­lease info, two links to mu­sic (one to the re­lease’s lead track, another to the whole re­lease, hosted pri­vately on Sound­cloud or Band­camp or sim­i­lar). In­clude tour dates, con­tact info and a link to a hi-res photo. You can also of­fer a down­load of the re­lease through an on­line file host but don’t at­tach large files to emails.

As a rule, don’t send CDs to on­line me­dia or any­one un­der 30. If re­quested, send a CD and a one-sheet fea­tur­ing the above and in­clude web­site links (get your own web­site as Face­book page reach is only go­ing down).

No lol­lipops, sneaky fivers or nov­elty items – you’re a band pre­sum­ably mak­ing worth­while mu­sic, not a creepy un­cle.

Make a plan for the re­lease that cov­ers the three months ei­ther side of the re­lease date. Don’t rush it. Give me­dia time to hear the mu­sic, sched­ule a re­view or in­ter­view, and if the process goes well for all in­volved, pro­mote your worth­while art to a new au­di­ence and en­rich the lives of mil­lions.

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